By Chidi Nkwopara
OWERRIâ€”Abia State Government has said it is determined to eradicate polio from the state before the end of next year.
It has consequently engaged the services of a consultant, to organise seminars, workshops and other sensitization programmes to properly educate, especially the rural populace on the urgent need to embrace immunization exercises as a means of achieving the target.
The State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Chief Johnny Ukpabi, made governmentâ€™s intention known in a chat with Vanguard.
â€œThe sanitization programme is being carried out by my Ministry in conjunction with the 17 local government chairmen in the state. The consultancy firm has been directed to move into the rural areas to explain the gains of immunization to the citizenry,â€ Ukpabi said.
The Commissioner said research had shown that while the citizens in the urban areas have fully embraced immunization, the reverse appeared to be the case in the rural communities.
He noted that some rural dwellers associate immunization with evil, while others do not even believe that the oral aspect of the exercise has any potency.
Chief Ukpabi disclosed that the state government was sincerely pushing to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) best practices in the eradication of polio and other life threatening diseases through immunization.